«The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress» (Psalm 46:7, NIV).
WE live in paradoxical times. How is it possible that now, when we have the greatest population density in the history of our small planet, is also when more people suffer from loneliness? We are surrounded by people, but we feel alone. A study was conducted in the United Kingdom with over four hundred thousand people, and it brought to light that «people who live in dense urban areas, particularly those with closely packed apartments, are more likely to experience loneliness and isolation.»
Chris Webster and his colleagues at the University of Hong Kong analyzed the data from the study and concluded «that loneliness is not only still prevalent in twenty-first-century cities, but is so endemic that we can detect a regular pattern and measure it.» In our days, loneliness not only affects us emotionally and socially, but also directly impacts our physical well-being. According to the American Psychological Association, loneliness increases the risk of suffering from Alzheimer’s, cardiovascular, and inflammatory diseases, and is the main predicting factor in the risk of death.
One of the reasons loneliness has become an «endemic» element in our times is that we have forgotten this divine promise: » (Do not fear, O Jacob My servant,’ says the Lord, ‘For I am with you’ » (Jeremiah 46:28). When Judah felt they could not face the King of Assyria, they received this assurance: «With him is an arm of flesh; but with us is the Lord our God, to help us and to fight our battles» (2 Chronicles 32:8). And the psalmist adds, «The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress» (Psalm 46:7).
Along these lines, Ellen G. White reminds us that «whatever our perplexity, we have a sure Counselor; whatever our sorrow, bereavement, or loneliness, we have a sympathizing Friend. If in our ignorance we make missteps, the Saviour does not forsake us. We need never feel that we are alone.»
Remember, God is fighting our battles for us, including the battle against loneliness and isolation. The assurance of God’s presence will provide the rungs we need to climb out of the loneliness that has sickened our souls. What is endemic for us is not loneliness, but God’s company.